New York Governor Kathy Hochul, a Democrat, is in face off U.S. Rep. Lee Zeldin, a Republican, in the 2022 election campaign’s gubernatorial debate.
Among things which took the center stage Tuesday as Hochul faced her Republican challenger Zeldin were crime, abortion and the deadly U.S. Capitol insurrection.
Governor Hochul blasted Zeldin’s past support for abortion restrictions and for former President Donald Trump. Zeldin vowed to repeal liberal criminal justice reforms and criticized Hochul’s push to send millions to abortion providers expand access for a predicted surge in out-of-state patients.
While linking him to Trump, Hochul labeled Zeldin an “election denier” and “climate change denier.”
“In Lee Zeldin’s world, you overthrow the results of elections you don’t agree with,” Hochul said.
Zeldin voted against certifying the 2020 presidential election results in Arizona and Pennsylvania. Subsequently, Trump’s claims of 2020 presidential election fraud transformed into marching orders that summoned supporters to Washington, D.C., and they then stormed the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, seeking to violently block Democrat Joe Biden’s victory.
In Lee Zeldin’s world, you overthrow the results of elections you don’t agree with.
When asked by a debate moderator if he would vote against certifying the results again, Zeldin didn’t directly say yes or no. He instead said he wanted to focus on the future, and fight to institute voter ID laws to protect election integrity.
While charging Hochul with failing to take seriously the concerns of New Yorkers about crimes on subways and hate crimes against Jewish and Asian-American communities, Zeldin also argued that liberal opposition to natural gas extraction and new pipelines in New York is hurting the state’s economy.
“You’re poorer and less safe because of Kathy Hochul and extreme policies,” Zeldin said, adding: “You deserve better.”